Skip to main content

Full text of "To The Lighthouse"

THE   WINDOW

Mrs. Ramsay. A whole French family could live
on what an English cook throws away. Spurred
on by her sense that William's affection had come
back to her, and that everything was all right
again, and that her suspense was over, and that
now she was free both to triumph and to mock,
she laughed, she gesticulated, till Lily thought,
How childlike, how absurd she was, sitting up
there with all her beauty opened again in her,
talking about the skins of vegetables. There was
something frightening about her. She was irre-
sistible. Always she got her own way in the end,
Lily thought. Now she had brought this offó
Paul and Minta, one might suppose, were engaged.
Mr. Bankes was dining here. She put a spell on
them all, by wishing, so simply, so directly; and
Lily contrasted that abundance with her own
poverty of spirit, and supposed that it was partly
that belief (for her face was all lit upówithout
looking young, she looked radiant) in this strange,
this terrifying thing, which made Paul Rayley,
the centre of it, all of a tremor, yet abstract,
absorbed, silent. Mrs. Ramsay, Lily felt, as she
talked about the skins of vegetables, exalted
that, worshipped that; held her hands over it to
warm them, to protect it, and yet, having brought
it all about, somehow laughed, led her victims,
Lily felt, to the altar. It came over her too nowó